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"We are the protagonists of our stories called life, and there is no limit to how high we can fly."

PHD. MBA. MHS. Type rated on A350, A330, B777, B747-400, B747-200, B757, B767, B737, B727. International Airline Pilot / Author / Speaker. Dedicated to giving the gift of wings to anyone following their dreams. Supporting Aviation Safety through training, writing, and inspiration. Fighting for Aviation Safety and Airline Employee Advocacy. Safety Culture and SMS change agent.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Change of Hats

Today I tossed the pilot hat, put on my grandma hat, and picked up my two-year-old granddaughter, Kadence, and we drove to the UW campus to pick up my two-month-old grandson, Miles. With both kids in arms, we visited the University Village and played in an undercover park in the middle of the shopping center, where I met a wonderful young lady, Allison.

Allison told me that she had always dreamed of becoming a pilot, but due financial reasons was not able to pursue her dreams. She is also married to a pilot who had worked for Horizon Airlines, but quit to make a full-time career in the military. Allison told me her husband’s concern of supporting a family as a pilot. He is now in Iraq, and not in a flying position.

To Allison and her husband... follow your dreams! We will get this crazy industry turned around. If we want quality people to fly our planes, then we have to provide them an opportunity to support their families. Allison, you are right, it is expensive to become a pilot, and you should be able to see a reward at the end of the sacrifice. We all know how much we are away from home and our families, the stress, responsibility, and health sacrifices.

One day the wind will shift in the direction of re-regulation, the only way to fix the current status of our industry, and then you and your husband can both afford the flying careers that you are passionate about.

It was great to meet you Allison! And tell your husband thank you for his sacrifice!

Enjoy the Journey!

~ Karlene


  1. I agree with re-regulation.
    I'm sure you've seen that documentary called "Flying Cheap: the race to the bottom" (i think.)
    One of my professors who taught us this course "air carrier administration" showed it to us. He basically said that pilots need a professional college of some sort much like Doctors and Dentists. So that there's a standard and companies who try to go below it, in terms of pay, training and work conditions are prohibited to do so.

    ps. I'm going back to see your previous posts. 1 partly because I have much free time right now, and 2 because I am trying to put direction into my own blog as seems kinda sporadic at the moment. :)

  2. Ramiel, Thanks for your comment. I have not seen that article. Good luck on your blog. Let me know when you get it going.

  3. here's the link to it!
    pretty interesting actually.

    and i'll get it going some time. i just don't have a whole lot of interesting things to talk about at the moment so it's been stagnant!

  4. Thank you! I'm off to read now. You'll find stuff to talk about. I'm thinking: Life!


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